BODYBUILDER Simba Mhaka knocked on many a door begging for money to compete at the World Fitness Federation Universe Championships in Brazil last month.
A host of well-wishers, who wanted to see Mhaka make his pro-debut, chipped in and raised the money needed to fund the trip.
Only for the lad to disappear and never make it to Rio. He was to resurface a few weeks later, reportedly driving a new car.
“The whole affair stinks to high heavens,” said one of the people who chipped in with assistance. “Simba cannot really explain what became of the trip. One day he says he arrived in Brazil late, the next he says he could not secure visas.
“More worrying is the fact that he is yet to come to the people who assisted him just to say ‘look this is what happened and this how the money you gave me was used’.”
The storm caused by his WFF no-show is understood to have pushed a local gym, which employed Mhaka as a personal trainer, to terminate his contract.
Mhaka insists his hands are clean.
“What happened is I applied and my visa was supposed to be issued on a Friday 16 June (but) then they didn’t give it to me until Wednesday 20 June, the day I was to leave.
“The visa was issued at 14:15 and my flight was at 15:00 so check-in was already closed. I then tried to change my ticket dates to the next flight and it was fully booked with two free seats in business class which needed a top-up of US$2 000, so it was a non-starter for me.
“Then the last option was the Friday 23 June flight but it was leaving at 9pm evening and was to arrive on Rio on Sunday at 3.15am. It was useless since the show was on Saturday,” he said.
Mhaka rubbishes claims that he helped himself to a new ride with the money.
“How can someone buy a car with US$1 000? All the money I got from donations is US$1 000. I really thank all who donated towards my trip.”
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